Skip to main content

Studies in Blue and Green: The Hudson River Park, South of Houston, Morning

For our morning walk, my dog forcefully pulled me toward the new Tribeca section of the Hudson River Park, as if she really needed me to check it out.

along the Hudson River Park, looking south. Sometimes, but especially in the summertime, it feels like the old core of the city fades to the background, while the edges near the shoreline present new chances for exploration.
On our semi-regular walks, we usually wander toward the pier in the Greenwich Village section near Christopher Street, so I hadn't realized that this stretch of the park to the south was open for our recreational pleasure.

This newly renovated section sports some nice features —

a well-landscaped nature boardwalk,

different types of grasses are planted in the nature boardwalk. So many parks and waterfront areas are being developed, not just sections of the Hudson River Park, but the new Brooklyn Bridge Park, the East River, Governors Island, and more.
an installation of sculptures titled "Serpentine Structures" by artist Marc Gibian,

artwork and landscaping help lend interest to the park. The new New York is characterized in part by development of green spaces and waterfront throughout the boroughs.
 a raised seating area with chairs and tables,

Everyone has to sit down at some point. City planning has embraced the concept that one key to a successful urban space is movable chairs.

a "pile field" popular with at least one bird,

Pile fields, the remaining wooden structures that once supported a removed pier, are left in place to help provide habitat for fish and other river organisms. One little white bird is perched here, joined by sculptures of birds. This morning, it was hard not to think about this little bird and the horrific scenes of birds covered in oil in the Gulf.
a minimalist standing pier with many benches,

Holland Tunnel Ventilation Building

and a couple of sets of sleek devices for viewing boats and the Statue of Liberty in the distance.

These are well-designed, meant to be used by people of different heights. Another set is on the pier. These telescopic devices are a symbol of ancient longing, as we cast our eyes outward to the seas. Herman Melville, in Moby Dick, describes the city "water-gazers" who are "fixed in ocean reveries."

This new section of the Hudson River Park is squeaky clean and tidy, and with the fresh and clear morning air, I thought for a few moments that I was in another place.

The boulders are even placed in a tidy and artful way.
As this was an unplanned adventure, I had only my phone with me for picture-taking. The images came out in highly saturated hues of blues and greens, the result of my choice of settings on the wacky camera app. The color of the water, the clear sky and the newly planted grasses along the boardwalk did lend an overall cool wash to the scene, although I remember the colors to be somewhat less intense than what is pictured here.

New Jersey is so blue.
Across the river, Jersey City shimmered like a tropical city. I thought for a moment that New York could be a new Miami. When folks retire, after toiling for years in their skyscrapers down south, I thought, they would enjoy moving up here to a life of leisure on the Hudson. Climate change and all that - it could happen.

Directions: Wander over to Hudson River Park via W. Houston Street and walk south until you have to stop. Bring water.

Images from June 4, 2010 by Walking Off the Big Apple. Clicking on the images will make them big and green and blue.


  1. That strange bldg in the middle of the river is the Holland tunnel air shaft. You can see a near identical one on the Jersey side of the river as well - and the Lincoln tunnel has similar towers.

  2. Thanks so much, The Black Fox. That helps fill out the picture.

  3. The phone pictures seem like a serendipitous accident..they suit the subject matter perfectly. It reminds me of our new riverfront park in Detroit. I always enjoy walking with you from afar.

  4. Belle Isle, Your blog is so interesting! My recent trip to Governors Island reminded me in many ways of your description of Detroit's Belle Isle.

  5. The picture looks like something out of a futuristic movie.

  6. Hi Michael,
    New York can often look that way and why the city often inspires the location of sci-fi films. That gives me a good idea for a blog post. Thanks!


Post a Comment

Popular posts from this blog

A New York Spring Calendar: Blooming Times and Seasonal Events

See the UPDATED 2018 CALENDAR HERE . Updated for 2017 . At this time of year, thoughts turn to spring. Let's spring forward to blooming times, the best locations for witnessing spring's beginnings, and springtime events in the big city. While the occasional snow could blow through the city, we're just weeks now from callery pears in bloom and opening day at the ballpark. In The Ramble, Central Park. mid-April Blooming Times •  Central Park Conservancy's website  lists blooming times within the park. During the month of March we begin to see crocus, daffodils, forsythia, snowdrops, witch-hazel, and hellebores. Species tulips will emerge in several places, but the Shakespeare Garden and Conservatory Garden are particularly good places to catch the beginning of Spring blooms. Central Park near E. 72nd St., saucer magnolia, typically end of March. •  Citywide Blooming Calendar from New York City Department of Parks & Recreation April is u

Museums in New York Open on Mondays

Please see this post for current announcements of reopenings . Please consult the museum websites for changes in days and hours. UPDATED September 23, 2020 Advance tickets required for many museum reopenings. Please check museum websites for details. • The  Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)  reopened to the public on  August 27 , with new hours for the first month, through September 27: from 10:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m. Tuesday through Sunday to the public; and from 10:30 a.m. until 5:30 p.m.  on Mondays for MoMA members on ly. Admission will be free to all visitors Tuesday through Sunday, through September 27, made possible by UNIQLO. See this  new post on WOTBA for a sense of the experience attending the museum . •  New-York Historical Society  reopened on  August 14  with an outdoor exhibition, "Hope Wanted: New York City Under Quarantine,” in the rear courtyard. The exhibit by activist Kevin Powell and photographer Kay Hickman will highlight how New Yorkers weathered the quarantine

25 Things To Do Near the Museum of Modern Art (MoMA)

(updated 2016) The Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) at 11 W. 53rd Street is near many other New York City attractions, so before or after a trip to the museum, a short walk in any direction could easily take in additional experiences. Drawing a square on a map with the museum at the center, a shape bounded by 58th Street to the north and 48th Street to the south, with 7th Avenue to the west and Park Avenue to the east, proves the point of the area's cultural richness. (A map follows the list below.) While well-known sightseeing stops fall with these boundaries, most notably Rockefeller Center, St. Patrick's Cathedral, and the great swath of famous Fifth Avenue stores, cultural visitors may also want to check out places such as the Austrian Cultural Forum, the 57th Street galleries, the Onassis Cultural Center, and the Municipal Art Society. The image above shows an intriguing glimpse of the tops of two Beaux-Arts buildings through an opening of the wall inside MoMA's scu

25 Things to Do Near the American Museum of Natural History

After visiting the American Museum of Natural History, explore attractions on the Upper West Side or in Central Park. Visitors to New York often run around from one major tourist site to the next, sometimes from one side of the city to the other, and in the process, exhaust themselves thoroughly. Ambitious itineraries often include something like coffee in the Village in the morning, lunch near MoMA, a couple of hours in the museum, a ride on the Staten Island Ferry in the afternoon, cocktails at the midtown hotel, a quick dinner, and then a Broadway show. It's a wonder people don't pass out at the theater. While sitting on the steps of the American Museum of History, consider exploring the Upper West Side and nearby sites of interest in Central Park. There's a better way to plan a New York trip. Consider grouping attractions together geographically. Several posts on this site address this recommended approach. The Wild West of the Tecumseh Playground Groupin

The High Line and Chelsea Market: A Good Pairing for a Walk

(revised 2017) The advent of spring, with its signs of growth and rebirth, is apparent both on the High Line , where volunteers are cutting away the old growth to reveal fresh blooms, and inside the Chelsea Market, where new tenants are revitalizing the space. A walk to take in both can become an exploration of bounty and surprise, a sensual walk of adventure and sustenance. A good pairing for a walk: The High Line and Chelsea Market Walking the High Line for a round trip from Gansevoort to W. 30th and then back again adds up to a healthy 2-mile walk. Regular walkers of the elevated park look for an excuse to go there. Especially delightful is showing off the park, a model of its kind, to visitors from out of town. A stroll through Chelsea Market. Time check. If you haven't stopped into Chelsea Market lately, you may want to take a detour from the High Line at the stairs on W. 16th St. and walk through the market for a quick assessment or a sampling. Among the sampli

25 Things to Do Near the Metropolitan Museum of Art

(updated) Sitting on the steps in front of the Metropolitan Museum of Art is one of those iconic things to do in New York City. On a sunny day, the wide steps can become crowded with the young and old, the tourist and the resident. It's tempting to stay awhile and soak in the sun and the sights. Everyone has reasons for lingering there, with one being the shared pleasure of people watching along this expansive stretch of Fifth Avenue, a painting come to life. Certainly, just getting off one's feet for a moment is welcome, especially if the previous hours involved walking through the entirety of art history from prehistoric to the contemporary. The entrance to the Metropolitan Museum of Art, Fifth Avenue The Metropolitan Museum of Art should be a singular pilgrimage, uninterrupted by feeble attempts to take in more exhibitions along Museum Mile. Pity the poor visitor who tries "to do" multiple museum exhibitions in one day, albeit ambitious, noble, and uplift

Taking a Constitutional Walk

A long time ago individuals going out for a walk, especially to get fresh air and exercise, often referred to the activity as "taking a constitutional walk." The word "constitutional" refers to one's constitution or physical makeup, so a constitutional walk was considered beneficial to one's overall wellbeing. (Or, as some would prefer to call it, "wellness.") The phrase is more common in British literature than in American letters. As early as the mid-nineteenth century, many American commentators expressed concern that their countrymen were falling into lazy and unhealthy habits. Newspaper columnists and editorial writers urged their readers to take up the practice of the "constitutional" walk. One such essay, " Walking as an Exercise," originally printed in the Philadelphia Gazette and reprinted in New England Farmer , Volume 11, 1859, urges the people of farm areas to take up walking. City dwellers seemed to have the

Introducing Birds of Inwood

Introducing a New Website It's been a moment since I posted last. Please forgive me. I have been in the forest down the street. After spending many of my leisure hours taking photographs of birds in my local neighborhood of Inwood, I am introducing to you a new website featuring these beautiful and often enigmatic creatures. It's called  Birds of Inwood . As I write there, "Inwood is my Amherst." With time, my advancing age, and the pandemic, I have learned to find depth and beauty in places close to home.  I have also found to my delight that designing a new website presents great opportunities. Birds of Inwood is pretty flashy! The birds are even larger than life on these new pages! Please visit. You'll be glad I didn't call it "Flying Off the Big Apple." Check out my forest home. - Teri

14 Useful Mobile Apps for Walking New York City

Texting and walking at the same time is wrong. Talking on the phone while strolling down the street is wrong. Leaving the sidewalk to stop and consult the information on a cellphone, preferably while alone, is OK. What's on Walking Off the Big Apple's iPhone: A List Walkmeter GPS Walking Stopwatch for Fitness and Weight Loss . While out walking, Walkmeter tracks routes, time, speed, and elevation. This is an excellent app for recording improvised or impromptu strolls, especially with many unplanned detours. The GPS function maps out the actual route. The app keeps a running tally of calories burned while walking, useful for weight loss goals. Another welcome feature is the ability to switch over to other modes of activity, including cycling. An indispensable app for city walkers. $4.99  New York City Compass , designed by Francesco Bertelli, is an elegant compass calibrated for Manhattan, with indications for Uptown, East Side, Downtown, and West Side. While facing a cert

Visiting New York on a Monday

Mondays are OK. Let's have a look at some of the museums open Mondays - • American Museum of Natural History • Jewish Museum • Museum of Modern Art (MoMA) • National Museum of the American Indian • Neue Galerie • Guggenheim Museum • South Street Seaport Museum Any of these museums could be paired with a nearby restaurant or bar, making a complete full afternoon or day in New York. Monday is especially good for a museum visit, because the crowds tend to be thinner, and restaurants, too, tend to be less busy than on a weekend. A fun museum and bistro walk on the Upper West Side would be a combination of the American Museum of Natural History and the nearby Cafe Lalo on W. 83rd St. I also would suggest a pairing of the Neue Galerie with a nearby cafe, but the two cafes inside the musuem are so good, why go anywhere else? Image above: The Guggenheim on left and Beaux-Arts townhouse on right. View from E. 88th St. by Walking Off the Big Apple.